Last fall, one of the World of Bluegrass festival’s biggest highlights was the Hillbenders’ rendition of “Tommy” – a beautiful and incredibly moving reinvention of The Who’s classic 1968 rock opera as bluegrass. It was a triumph in every way; and also the last time I ever saw Louis Meyers alive, the man who conceptualized and produced the project. Meyers passed of a heart attack last month. In his absence, the Hillbenders are carrying on with “Tommy” and they’re bringing it back to Raleigh on Thursday (April 28). It’s a pricey affair this go-round because it’s a benefit show for Teen Cancer America, a pet cause of The Who; but it just might be worth the dough because Who frontman Roger Daltrey will be there as host. The $300 ticket price includes a VIP reception with Daltrey, plus dinner. And while it’s not confirmed that Daltrey will perform, one can hope he might get onstage with the Hillbenders for a one-of-a-kind cameo.
- Friday brings Kentucky rappers Nappy Roots to Raleigh’s Pour House, Tokyo Police Club to Motorco Music Hall in Durham and The Old Ceremony playing both electric and acoustic at Carrboro’s Cat’s Cradle Back Room.
- Michael Rank’s Stag plays Saturday at Carrboro’s recently reopened Station.
- Speaking of unusual bluegrass tangents, Hayseed Dixie plays bluegrass versions of metal hits Sunday at Motorco.
- Birds of Avalon open for Brazilian psychedelic band Boogarins Monday at the Cradle Back Room.
- And Beloved Binge plays Slim’s in Raleigh on Thursday, the Durham duo’s second-to-last Triangle show before an impending relocation to New York City.